CSSB 110(L&C): "An Act establishing the Travel Alaska Board; relating to a tourism marketing assessment; and establishing a tourism marketing fund."
00 CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 110(L&C) 01 "An Act establishing the Travel Alaska Board; relating to a tourism marketing 02 assessment; and establishing a tourism marketing fund." 03 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA: 04 * Section 1. AS 43.52.050(a) is amended to read: 05 (a) Except as provided in (c) of this section, the [THE] taxes imposed by 06 AS 43.52.010 - 43.52.099 shall be collected and paid to the department 07 (1) by the person who provides the leased or rented vehicle; and 08 (2) in the manner and at the times required by the department by 09 regulation. 10 * Sec. 2. AS 43.52.050 is amended by adding a new subsection to read: 11 (c) A person collecting and remitting the tax imposed by AS 43.52.010 - 12 43.52.099 may request, at the time the tax is remitted to the department, to have all or 13 a portion of the tax revenue deposited into the Alaska tourism marketing fund 14 established under AS 44.25.295.
01 * Sec. 3. AS 43.52.080(b) is amended to read: 02 (b) The proceeds of the vehicle rental taxes imposed by AS 43.52.010 - 03 43.52.099 shall be deposited into the general fund and accounted for under 04 AS 37.05.142. In addition, the department shall separately account for those 05 proceeds that persons have requested be appropriated to the Alaska tourism 06 marketing fund established under AS 44.25.295 [A SPECIAL VEHICLE RENTAL 07 TAX ACCOUNT IN THE GENERAL FUND]. 08 * Sec. 4. AS 43.52.080(c) is amended to read: 09 (c) The legislature may appropriate to the Alaska tourism marketing fund 10 established under AS 44.25.295 the tax proceeds that persons have, under 11 AS 43.52.050(c), requested be appropriated to the Alaska tourism marketing 12 fund [ACTUAL BALANCE OF THE VEHICLE RENTAL TAX ACCOUNT FOR 13 TOURISM DEVELOPMENT AND MARKETING]. This section is not intended to 14 create a dedicated fund. 15 * Sec. 5. AS 44.25 is amended by adding new sections to read: 16 Article 4. Travel Alaska Board. 17 Sec. 44.25.200. Travel Alaska Board established. The Travel Alaska Board 18 is established in the department. Exercise by the board of the powers conferred by 19 AS 44.25.200 - 44.25.300 is an essential governmental function of the state. 20 Sec. 44.25.205. Board members. (a) The board consists of between 21 and 25 21 voting board members appointed by the governor. The board must have an odd 22 number of members. 23 (b) The governor shall fill a vacancy in the voting membership of the board 24 from a list of nominees submitted by the board. The governor may reject a list or a 25 portion of a list submitted under this subsection and request that the board submit 26 another list. A list submitted to the governor by the board under this subsection for a 27 vacancy 28 (1) caused by the expiration of a term shall be composed of the 29 nominees that received the highest percentages of votes in an election of assessed 30 tourism businesses, based on weighted votes, as described in AS 44.25.275; 31 (2) not caused by the expiration of a term shall be composed of
01 nominees approved by the board; a nominee approved by the board under this 02 paragraph is not required to have previously been the subject of an election under 03 AS 44.25.275. 04 (c) Board members shall represent tourism segments, business sizes, and 05 regions in the state listed in AS 44.33.136(b)(1). A voting member of the board shall 06 be both a representative of an assessed business and a member of the leading statewide 07 nonprofit tourism marketing association. Notwithstanding AS 39.05.100, a board 08 member is not required to be a registered voter or a resident of the state. 09 (d) In addition to the voting members of the board, the board may elect ex 10 officio nonvoting members. A nonvoting member need not be a member of the leading 11 statewide nonprofit tourism marketing association and may not be counted for the 12 purposes of establishing a quorum, taking an action, or adopting a motion or resolution 13 under AS 44.25.220. 14 (e) The board members shall annually elect a chair and vice-chair from among 15 the board's voting members. 16 Sec. 44.25.210. Term of office. Board members appointed under 17 AS 44.25.205(a) serve staggered three-year terms and may be reappointed. An 18 individual appointed to fill a vacancy shall hold office for the balance of the term for 19 which the board member's predecessor on the board was appointed. 20 Sec. 44.25.215. Removal. Board members may be removed from the board by 21 the governor for cause. The board may suggest to the governor the removal of a board 22 member. 23 Sec. 44.25.220. Quorum. (a) A majority of the voting members of the board 24 constitutes a quorum for the transaction of business and the exercise of the powers and 25 duties of the board. The board may approve an election for the levy, amendment, or 26 termination of an assessment only by an affirmative vote of a majority of the full 27 voting membership of the board. All other actions may be taken and motions and 28 resolutions may be adopted upon an affirmative vote of a majority of the voting 29 members present. 30 (b) The board may meet and transact business by electronic media. Actions 31 taken at a meeting held by electronic media under this subsection have the same legal
01 effect as actions taken at a meeting held in person. 02 Sec. 44.25.225. Compensation of board members. Board members receive 03 no salary and are not entitled to per diem or travel expenses. 04 Sec. 44.25.230. Meetings. The board shall meet at least twice a year. A 05 meeting of the board shall occur at the call of the chair or upon the written request of 06 five members of the board. 07 Sec. 44.25.235. Administration and regulations. (a) The board may request 08 administrative support from the leading statewide nonprofit tourism marketing 09 association. The board shall work with the leading statewide nonprofit tourism 10 marketing association to accomplish the purposes of AS 44.25.200 - 44.25.300. 11 (b) The board shall adopt definitions for "tourism industry," "tourism 12 segment," and "tourism business" and provide them to the department. The department 13 shall adopt definitions for "tourism industry," "tourism segment," and "tourism 14 business" for the purposes of administering the tax under AS 44.25.200 - 44.25.300 15 after receiving the definitions adopted by the board under this section. The department 16 may, for the purpose of adopting regulations defining "tourism industry," "tourism 17 segment," and "tourism business," accept the board's definitions or reject the board's 18 definitions and request alternate definitions from the board. 19 Sec. 44.25.240. Powers of the board. In carrying out the powers of the board, 20 the board may 21 (1) prescribe, adopt, amend, and repeal policies related to the board; 22 (2) cooperate with a public or private board, organization, or agency 23 engaged in work or activities similar to the work or activities of the board for 24 destination marketing programs, including market research; 25 (3) establish offices in the state and otherwise incur expenses 26 incidental to the performance of its duties; 27 (4) appear on behalf of the board before boards, commissions, 28 departments, or other agencies of municipal, state, or federal government; 29 (5) acquire, hold, lease, sell, or otherwise dispose of property, but the 30 property is limited to that which is necessary to the administrative functioning of the 31 board;
01 (6) approve and enter into agreements related to the expenditure of 02 funds appropriated by the legislature to the board; 03 (7) designate or remove ex officio, nonvoting members of the board. 04 Sec. 44.25.245. Duties of the board. The board shall 05 (1) conduct programs of destination marketing, research, advertising, 06 or sales promotion designed to retain and expand the tourism industry in the state; 07 (2) promote all assessed segments of the tourism industry; 08 (3) prepare market research and marketing plans for the promotion of 09 assessed segments of the tourism industry; 10 (4) consider the return on investment for all nonadministrative 11 expenditures of assessment funds; 12 (5) submit an annual report to the governor, assessed tourism 13 businesses, and the senate secretary and chief clerk of the house of representatives on 14 or before the first day of each regular session of the legislature and notify the 15 legislature that the report is available; the report must 16 (A) describe the activities of the board; 17 (B) summarize the income and expenses of the board; 18 (C) provide the balance of the Alaska tourism marketing fund 19 established under AS 44.25.295; and 20 (D) summarize and report on the tourism marketing plan; 21 (6) annually prepare a written marketing plan; the plan must promote 22 travel and tourism in the state and must include 23 (A) an evaluation of the previous year's budget and activities; 24 (B) a review of state tourism trends, conditions, and 25 opportunities; 26 (C) an identification of target audiences for tourism marketing 27 expenditures; 28 (D) marketing strategies, objectives, and targets; 29 (E) the current assessment rate applicable to assessed tourism 30 segments; and 31 (F) the budget for the current year;
01 (7) promote travel and tourism to increase the number of persons 02 traveling to and within the state; and 03 (8) determine the segments of the tourism industry that provide similar 04 goods and services to travelers; a business segment must be defined with sufficient 05 clarity to allow for the cost-effective identification of tourism businesses within that 06 business segment. 07 Sec. 44.25.250. Expenditures. An expenditure of the board 08 (1) must be consistent with the marketing plan prepared under 09 AS 44.25.245(6); and 10 (2) may not be spent on capital or infrastructure improvement projects; 11 for purposes of this paragraph, capital or infrastructure improvement projects do not 12 include information technology improvements, website development and maintenance, 13 or office equipment. 14 Sec. 44.25.255. Levy or amendment of the Alaska tourism marketing 15 assessment. (a) An election under AS 44.25.270 shall be held if the proposed election 16 for levying or amending the rate of an assessment under (c) of this section is approved 17 by the board. 18 (b) An assessment shall be levied on the gross revenue of a tourism business 19 that is related to an assessed business segment at a rate provided under (c) of this 20 section if an election is held under AS 44.25.270 at which the rate under (c) of this 21 section is approved, as determined under AS 44.25.275. Each business segment may 22 be assessed at a different rate. Only those rates stated in (c) of this section may be 23 considered for an assessment on a segment of the tourism industry. 24 (c) An assessment under this section may require a tourism business engaging 25 in a segment of the tourism industry to pay an assessment of 26 (1) zero percent of the gross revenue related to the assessed segment; 27 (2) 0.25 percent of the gross revenue related to the assessed segment; 28 (3) 0.5 percent of the gross revenue related to the assessed segment; 29 (4) 0.75 percent of the gross revenue related to the assessed segment; 30 (5) one percent of the gross revenue related to the assessed segment; 31 (6) 1.25 percent of the gross revenue related to the assessed segment;
01 (7) 1.5 percent of the gross revenue related to the assessed segment; 02 (8) 1.75 percent of the gross revenue related to the assessed segment; 03 (9) two percent of the gross revenue related to the assessed segment. 04 (d) The board shall advertise an election held for the purpose of levying or 05 amending an assessment under AS 44.25.270 and, before an election is held under 06 AS 44.25.270, shall schedule public meetings for potential assessed tourism 07 businesses to provide input to the board. 08 Sec. 44.25.260. Collection of and information related to the Alaska tourism 09 marketing assessment. (a) A tourism business shall pay the assessment levied under 10 AS 44.25.200 - 44.25.300. Each assessed tourism business may pass the cost of the 11 assessment on to its customers at the time a transaction is consummated. If the cost is 12 passed on to a customer, the assessed tourism business shall disclose the amount in 13 advance and separately state the amount from the amount charged and any other 14 applicable taxes, and shall give each customer a receipt of payment. The assessment 15 shall be disclosed as the "Alaska tourism marketing assessment." The assessment is 16 imposed solely on, and is the sole obligation of, the assessed tourism business, even if 17 it is passed on to customers. The assessment may not be considered revenue for any 18 purpose, including calculation of taxes. 19 (b) A return or other information furnished to the board or the department by 20 an assessed tourism business under AS 44.25.200 - 44.25.300 is confidential and may 21 not be disclosed except 22 (1) by a person during the performance of an official duty under 23 AS 44.25.200 - 44.25.300; 24 (2) to comply with a court order; 25 (3) in the course of a proceeding, a hearing, or litigation involving an 26 assessment; or 27 (4) upon written consent of the assessed tourism business. 28 (c) Information obtained by the board or the department to determine the 29 assessment for an assessed tourism business is not a public record for purposes of 30 AS 40.25.100 - 40.25.130. 31 (d) The department may require an assessed tourism business to
01 (1) maintain books and records that verify the gross revenue of the 02 business for purposes of the assessment; 03 (2) furnish any requested information; and 04 (3) permit the inspection by the department of portions of books and 05 records that relate to the gross revenue of the business or the amount of the 06 assessment. 07 Sec. 44.25.265. Termination of the Alaska tourism marketing assessment. 08 (a) An assessment shall be terminated on the earlier of 09 (1) six years after the date of the first assessment; or 10 (2) the effective date stated on a ballot approved under the procedures 11 described in AS 44.25.270 in which the termination is approved, as determined under 12 AS 44.25.275. 13 (b) An election under AS 44.25.270 for the termination of an assessment shall 14 be held if the proposed election for the termination of the assessment is approved by 15 the board. 16 Sec. 44.25.270. Election procedures. (a) The board may conduct an election 17 under this section after the director of elections approves the 18 (1) notice to be published by the board; 19 (2) ballot to be used in the election; and 20 (3) registration and voting procedures. 21 (b) In conducting an election under this section, the board shall 22 (1) adopt a proposed levy, amendment, or termination of an assessment 23 on a business segment at a meeting of the board held not less than 60 days before the 24 date on which the ballots must be postmarked to be counted; 25 (2) hold at least one meeting not less than 30 days before the date on 26 which ballots must be postmarked to be counted to explain the reason for the proposed 27 levy, amendment, or termination of the assessment and to explain the voting procedure 28 to be used in the election; the board shall provide notice of the meeting by 29 (A) mailing a notice to each assessed tourism business; and 30 (B) publishing the notice in at least one newspaper of general 31 circulation in each region of the state at least two weeks before the meeting;
01 (3) mail ballots to each tourism business in the applicable business 02 segment not more than 45 days before the date specified as the date ballots must be 03 postmarked; the ballot must 04 (A) state that an assessment is to be levied, amended, or 05 terminated, as applicable; 06 (B) state the assessment rate to be levied, amended, or 07 terminated, as applicable, for the business segment; 08 (C) state that each vote will be weighted in proportion to the 09 projected assessment each voting tourism business is estimated to pay for the 10 following calendar year; 11 (D) state the effective date of the levy, amendment, or 12 termination of the assessment; 13 (E) ask whether the assessment shall be levied, amended, or 14 terminated, as applicable; 15 (F) be returned by mail to the director of elections; the director 16 of elections or a representative shall count the ballots. 17 (c) The director of elections shall certify the results of an election under this 18 section if the director determines that the requirements of (a) and (b) of this section 19 and AS 44.25.275 have been satisfied. 20 (d) For purposes of this section, a ballot submitted by a tourism business is 21 presumed valid if the ballot is signed by an individual who is indicated to be an officer 22 of the tourism business or an authorized representative. 23 Sec. 44.25.275. Weighted votes. For a levy, amendment, or termination of an 24 assessment to be approved under AS 44.25.270, or for the selection of board nominees 25 to fill a vacancy caused by the expiration of a term to be submitted to the governor 26 under AS 44.25.205(b), the action must be approved by tourism businesses that, in 27 total, represent at least 50 percent of the weighted votes received. Votes shall be 28 weighted in proportion to the assessment that each voting tourism business is 29 estimated to pay for the calendar year immediately following the election, as 30 determined under AS 44.25.260. In a vote related to an assessment on a business 31 segment for which an assessment is currently levied, only the votes of tourism
01 businesses that pay an assessment at the time of the election shall be counted, 02 weighted as described in this section. 03 Sec. 44.25.280. Determination of value. Upon request of the director of 04 elections, the commissioner of revenue shall determine the estimated assessment for 05 each assessed tourism business for any calendar year, including a future calendar year 06 for purposes of weighting votes under AS 44.25.275. 07 Sec. 44.25.285. Remitting assessments. Each assessed tourism business shall 08 remit to the department within 30 days after the end of each calendar quarter the total 09 amount of the assessment owed on the value of assessed gross revenue in the previous 10 calendar quarter. The department shall inform the board within 60 days after the end 11 of each calendar quarter of the total amount of assessment collections as of the 30 days 12 following the preceding calendar quarter available to be apportioned by the board. An 13 assessed tourism business that fails to remit an assessment is subject to penalties as 14 provided in AS 43.05 and AS 43.10. 15 Sec. 44.25.290. Enforcement of assessments. The provisions of AS 43.05 and 16 AS 43.10 apply to the enforcement and collection of the Alaska tourism marketing 17 assessment. 18 Sec. 44.25.295. Assessment proceeds; Alaska tourism marketing fund. (a) 19 The Alaska tourism marketing fund is established in the general fund. The fund 20 consists of money appropriated to the fund. The legislature may appropriate from the 21 fund for purposes consistent with AS 44.25.200 - 44.25.300. 22 (b) The legislature may appropriate the proceeds of the assessment to the 23 Alaska tourism marketing fund. 24 (c) Nothing in this section creates a dedicated fund. 25 Sec. 44.25.300. Definitions. In AS 44.25.200 - 44.25.300, 26 (1) "assessment" means an assessment levied under AS 44.25.200 - 27 44.25.300; 28 (2) "board" means the Travel Alaska Board; 29 (3) "business segment" means a business segment determined under 30 AS 44.25.245(8); 31 (4) "department" means the Department of Revenue;
01 (5) "traveler" means a person who travels for business, recreation, or 02 pleasure. 03 * Sec. 6. The uncodified law of the State of Alaska is amended by adding a new section to 04 read: 05 TRANSITION. (a) Notwithstanding AS 44.25.200 - 44.25.300, added by sec. 5 of this 06 Act, the board of directors of the leading statewide nonprofit tourism marketing association 07 shall act as a transition board. The transition board shall establish procedures for elections and 08 propose to the governor the initial number of members on the Travel Alaska Board. The 09 transition board shall hold an election in compliance with the requirements in AS 44.25.205, 10 44.25.270, and 44.25.275, added by sec. 5 of this Act, for the purpose of determining 11 nominees for the Travel Alaska Board and for proposing assessment rates that comply with 12 AS 44.25.255, added by sec. 5 of this Act, to the Travel Alaska Board after the board is 13 established. Following the election, the transition board shall provide the governor a list of 14 nominees for the Travel Alaska Board and, after the Travel Alaska Board is established, 15 submit to the Travel Alaska Board the proposed assessment rates approved in the election. 16 The transition board exists only until it submits the proposed assessment rates to the Travel 17 Alaska Board. 18 (b) The governor shall appoint the initial members of the Travel Alaska Board from a 19 list provided under (a) of this section. The governor may reject all or a portion of a list 20 provided under (a) of this section and request another list. 21 (c) Notwithstanding AS 44.25.255, added by sec. 5 of this Act, the Travel Alaska 22 Board may ratify an assessment or assessments proposed by the transition board without an 23 election. If the Travel Alaska Board ratifies the assessment, it shall be imposed as if it had 24 been approved in accordance with AS 44.25.255. 25 (d) In this section, "assessment" has the meaning given in AS 44.25.300, added by 26 sec. 5 of this Act.